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Tony Hawk's Pro Skater

Gaming :: Retrospection :: Date: May 11th, 2019

Written by: Raccoon

I don't skateboard in real life. I have a very delicate bone structure. But I am addicted to skateboarding in video games, namely the Tony Hawk franchise.

Gameplay

This may be Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, but it should be called Tony 'n' Friends Skateboarding. It's not just Tony Hawk! One of them is even black! And one's a girl! There's a Brazillian dude too! This really is a video game for everyone.

There aren't any Mexicans though because this was before the George W. Bush administration.

You can customize your skateboard with authentic decks that the skaters actually use (as far as I know, I mean I have no proof of that but I believe it.)

My favorite is the Evil Cat board. I mean, look at it. It's a cat. Cats are cool.

Every non-competition level has five missions. Four of them will always to collect floating letters that spell S-K-A-T-E, two different high scores and a hidden tape you have to find floating around in the level. But in addition to those, each mission has a specialty mission that I'll go more in depth with later.

There's a High Score feature that actually accomplishes what Atari never really succeeded at: making people care about high scores away from the arcade. Your friends would often come over to whoever had this game's house and try to beat each other's high scores all the time. It was a social innovation. Like the hacky sack. Or no-commitment makeout sessions with your friends.

Everyone loved it.

Skate Parks

The Warehouse, Woodland Hills

Woodland Hills is a neighborhood bordering the Santa Monica Mountains in the San Fernando Valley region of the city of Los Angeles, California.

So basically it's full of liberals.

According to Wikipedia, there's a shiiiiitload of white people in Woodland Hills. They've also got a shitload of schools up there, one of which being an all-girls Catholic school.

That's where girls become women.

School, Miami

This one is weird because I didn't realize people from Miami went to school. I thought they just got tans and fucked a lot.

I mean, we're talking an entire state who couldn't figure out Dexter was killing all those people. Come on, now.

Mall, New York

The mall is kind of like a racetrack. It's a linear path that you cruise down at full speed, trying to get your missions done in one swift swoop. It's really fun. Plus, I used to play multiplayer on it and race people to the finish in the mall. It was a blast. Nobody wanted to hang out with me after I came up with the idea but I'm sure that's just a coincidence.

Skate Park, Chicago

Now the game gets diverse. This is the competition round. Basically, you get three one-minute rounds to trick as much as possible and get the highest score total at the end of the three rounds.

Downtown, Minneapolis

I love cities at night. They're the most beautiful thing ever and this level is the greatest level ever.

The one thing that makes this one special too, aside from being able to scale to the top of buildings, is that there's taxi cabs driving around that can run you the fuck over like Stone Cold.

Downhill Jam, Phoenix

It's like the mall but outside.

Burnside, Portland

Now this is where we get into some Raccoonomicon shit. This was the most important level to my circle back in it's day. While I grew up in Washington, we were close to Portland, Oregon and often got a lot of their news, TV, radio stations, etc. So my hot cousin really wanted to unlock this level when she came over for Christmas in the year 2000. But you see, her brother had shown me a cool site called CheatCC.com

My hot cousin was doing all she could to unlock Burnside but kept falling short of the few tapes she needed to get. This was at a point in my life where my mom and I were sharing a bedroom at my grandma's house, so I had instant access to her computer. So I went over to CheatCC, got the "all tapes" cheat, punched it in and voila! Burnside was unlocked!

...and then we made out.

(No we didn't.)

Streets, San Francisco

This level is the drizzling shits. I hate it. If it had any less shit to trick off of this would be on the same page as an abandoned beta level. It's so fucking boring.

It's the only bad level in the game... but damn it sucks.

... and if you can get through these levels, you unlock Area 51! They've got an alien getting anal probed in there!

Soundtrack

Get it? Gold Finger Superman!

The game features music by Primus, Suicidal Tendencies, Dead Kennedys, The Ernies, Speedealer, Unsane, The Vandals, Even Rude, Goldfinger and Suicide Machines.

Interestingly, I grew up playing the Nintendo 64 version, which compressed the music brutally. Like this:

Now that's some tasty compression.

Final Verdict

Control
  • 5.0
  • Graphics
  • 4.0
  • Sound
  • 3.5
  • Fun Factor
  • 5.0
  • This is one of the most fun games of all time. It's amazing. You can be a beginner or an expert and have just as much fun as the other with this, and the gameplay will always seem different for each person based on how you approach it. The game is so non-linear it's almost made of liquid and being poured all over your fingers like a hot and sticky sauce on a pancake. Buy this game on PC, Dreamcast, PlayStation or Nintendo 64. I think it's on NGage too but fuck that.